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 > Opinions on a small block Chevy

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notsobigjoe

southeast

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Joined: 09/15/2016

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Posted: 01/28/22 11:09am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Grit dog wrote:

OP, please post a pic of the front of your current truck....I'm really struggling to figure what that person's vision was with that front clip!

Also, if you like the rest of the truck and it runs good and the issues are only caused by that fugly nose, parts are dime a dozen to put an original front clip back on it. Unless you don't do that kind of work, then dump it, but you wont get much money looking like that and having issues.


The pic and a little history. Here's a pic of the front after I cut all of what you see out and installed vents. Since then it has not overheated in central Florida. I bought the truck a while back in Troy PA and paid 3600 dollars for it. It's a long story I won't go into why it was so cheap. Everything worked fine up north but 8.5 years ago we got transferred to Dallas GA and then to the Orlando area where we live now. That 1/2 inch of fiberglass was literally frying the motor. So this is what I did.
[image]
Here's a pic of my finished work a couple of years ago. I had just repainted the front end as well as body work. It provides plenty of air.
[image]
I said it has two problems that have been with me since we left home in upstate NY. I had to replace the mechanical fan because with the front end as it is now after I did all the work it still was getting to hot. I installed 2 fans and relays and I was good to go.
Problem number two is that all of the wiring and everything else below and behind those new vents have been exposed to the elements, constantly not just driving. The engine wiring harness has become brittle and worn by the incredible Florida heat and humidity. This is the fourth Parasitic drain I've tracked down. This is also the fourth battery in a couple of years.
I just priced a harness on Jegs and it's about 600 bucks with probably another 400 in extra parts to finish the job. I'm 60 years old and want to run another wiring harness like I want a hole in the head. So that's all of it. I've been researching the smaller motors since you all have posted and everything you all say is backed up by the Chevy forums. Do I want to get another old truck with a whole new set of problems or change a wiring harness and go with what I got? That's my dilemma.
One more thing, With the exception of those two issues this truck is a runner, hauler and can tow anything I got to anywhere I want to go.
The boat I tow is a small Boston whaler skiff with a 25HP Yamaha outboard if it weighs 1000 pounds I'd be surprised.

mkirsch

Rochester, NY

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Posted: 01/28/22 12:52pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yikes.

If all you need is the front wiring harness, if you do it in conjunction with a factory front clip, it should not be all that bad.

You could always put an Escalade front clip on it...


Putting 10-ply tires on half ton trucks since aught-four.

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 01/28/22 01:44pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Tis certainly unique!
And I understand your struggle.
IMO, the truck isn't worth much with that umm custom work.
Part of the reason I was asking for more pic, other than my morbid curiosity, lol, was to see if it looked modified structurally in front.
Looks like core support is there, so I may consider putting a stock front clip on it to sell. Sounds like that may open another can of worms though, plus all the work required.
You're right, best decision may be to just let it go bye bye. Sounds like you have the knowledge but not the time or motivation to make the truck "right" again. Totally understandable.

That said, used truck prices are quite high (as you know I'm sure). I certainly would not shy away from a clean unmolested truck like you have now (a GMT 400). In fact, I place those trucks, in general, very high on the reliability and bang for the buck list, even still now that they're coming on 30 years old.
If you could find a HD GMT 400 Vortec with a NV4500 5 speed and either 350 or 454, it would serve you well for a while, I feel. And while LS powered trucks are good, there's something to be said for the 88-98 models.


2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 01/28/22 01:46pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

BTW, nice lookin place you got there! The SE is starting to grow on me a bit since our boy just went down there for college.

Supercharged111

Colorado Springs, CO

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Posted: 01/28/22 02:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Any reason not to slap a clip on the current truck and just keep running it? Your tiedowns won't transfer over to the truck you linked, so from what I can tell it doesn't meet the criteria you laid out in the first post.


2007 Lance 1131
1997 GMC K3500 crew cab supercharged dually

vern kelly

la crescenta, ca

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Posted: 01/29/22 09:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Nearly all of the weight of a truck camper is over the rear axel as the Grit Dog said. I've weighed truck with and without camper for the measurements and only 200 pounds were added to the front axel when camper loaded. I was somewhat amazed by this. A big boy motor is always better when getting into hills, boat launch ramps, and headwinds. But a 6.0 Chebby will do the job especially in flat Florida. Florida is one flat state!


1998 2500 Dodge V10 3.55 Quad cab. Lance 5000 camper 9'10" and tow 17.5 ft Larson Boat

Supercharged111

Colorado Springs, CO

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Posted: 01/30/22 10:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I had another thought: is that front clip ducted to the radiator and air intake? The factory did a decent job at directing the air where it needed to go without an excessive amount of air bypassing critical items.

notsobigjoe

southeast

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Posted: 01/30/22 11:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

This is what is left of the front end frame "Blue". There is nothing to work with so putting a clip on won't work. Same on the other side.
[image]
This is the finished product of many years of hit and miss in the repair of this truck. This motor runs perfectly and is as strong as the day it was built. The list is too long to say what I did to it but it's the usual stuff, Re-maned heads, gaskets and stuff like that. The wiring hanging out of wrap is what I'm working on.
[image]
I had a couple of friends over last night and we are all motor heads. The consensus was to take Grit dogs opinion and go with that. It's not worth anything to anyone else but me. I'm keeping it. I'm installing a battery cut off switch today so I don't have to keep undoing the neg. batt. cable. That will be less annoying. Also going to skip the front wiring harness as I'm not putting anymore money into it. I'll track the electrical short as I always do. I have commented on the forum that my wife and I where looking to go to a travel trailer some time back and I think after this episode we will rethink that. The truck will be sold with the camper on top of it as is and will probably catch me more money than if I sold it out right. We have 18 camping reservations this year and will go to them all and then I will part ways with the both of them.
As usual the group on the forum was again far and away more helpful than other places I visit. Thank you all very much for your help.
Yes if your wondering, I'm already missing my truck camper just like I miss my old Bayliner I sold this year.... LOL
[image]

Supercharged111

Colorado Springs, CO

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Posted: 01/30/22 04:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I can see where they cut the core support, that's an easy kill especially with the clip off. But the frame rail itself runs under the core support. Seeing how a chopped up stock core support is still in place, it seems to me enough frame is still there to slap a clip back on. Or is the meat to hang bumper mounts off of gone?

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 01/30/22 04:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

^ Looks like it’s all gone.
Joe, I guess remember you got a “deal” on it what you bought it, for a reason.
It doesn’t owe you anything.
Safe travels this year !
One thing is for sure. If I ever see that truck, I WILL recognize it!

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